Thursday, February 2, 2012

fellow nostalgiahead

Yet another blog caught my eye the other day, and I couldn’t refrain from sharing the delightful find with you, my dear readers. Nostalgic Rambler is the brainchild of author Hans “Jeff” Borger. Bringing to you the “nostalgic ramblings and musings on Pop Americana of the 1940s to 1960s,” he tackles a bevy of topics, most of which are, truthfully, unfamiliar to me. I scanned the post titles for one that would be most pertinent to my blog and happened on this one. I’ll leave it up to you to read the post, ‘cause what I’d like to talk about is the ubiquitous voice in this blog.

Jeff leaves a lot of room for the audience to form an opinion about him. On one hand, the breadth and depth of his knowledge makes him an authority on the culture of these eras. Jeff is eloquent, but not in a pedantic or overly academic way. He employs a concise and easy to follow sentence structure and refrains from excessive use of punctuation. He’s educated, but doesn’t try to wave it in his readers’ face, demonstrating that he’s comfortable with his level of knowledge. He spares his readers from the pseudo-intellectual tone too commonly found in the blogging world.

His voice is characterized by disillusionment, his tone bemused.  So what’s the cause of this? Well, for starters, he feels that these bygone eras were better times to live in. His idea of a Golden Era is crippling him and his life in the present day, maybe even alienating those around him: “I live in the past. My time warp is a comfortable cocoon even if it sometimes drives my wife crazy.” Jeff lives vicariously through the subjects of his blog posts, and his nostalgia may be a coping mechanism for living in a time in which he doesn’t feel he belongs or fits in. At the same time, he is the voice of an older generation, his suspicions of the younger generations’ amusements apparent in his sporadic, somewhat condescending undertone: “I don’t think we have too many national wits around anymore. The general population is probably too lowbrow to understand the comments.”

He’s nostalgic for a time when everyone gathered around the radio set for Benny Goodman’s orchestra in the same way that kids today are nostalgic for when Joy Division and Echo and the Bunnymen graced television sets over MTV’s airwaves. Reedimingly, he tempers his overflowing nostalgia with a healthy serving of self-criticism. He didn’t actually live to witness half of the things he talks about and he openly admits to that in his introduction:  
The music of the 1940s and 50s, the stars of those days were big stuff in their day, but are now almost forgotten. Oddly enough, I was born in ’64 so those iconic years were for the most part over by that time.
Jeff comes across with an almost father-like tone. It’s difficult to pinpoint exactly why this is so, but he evokes that anecdotal feel present in any story beginning with “When I was kid…” Imagine him saying this at the dinner table: 
Today in 2011 the 1940s seem like ancient history. Subtract thirty years from today and you get 1981…that doesn’t sound like THAT long ago, does it? As Jack Benny would have said…"Hmmmmmmmm."
 Jeff is softspoken, subtle, and ultimately endearing.

This blog is Jeff’s outlet to wax nostalgic and talk about the things he doesn’t think anyone in his life can appreciate: “The comments presented…probably won’t be of interest to the masses…anymore. If grandma and grandpa and their friends were still alive, then it would be a different story.” And thus the name Nostalgic Rambler: It might be rambling to everyone else, but to him it’s gold.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks from your soft spoken, subtle and ultimately endearing Nostalgic Rambler......You are one cool lady and perhaps one day we will have "Breakfast at Tiffanys"